Believe it or not, I’ve walked into several homes and condos that are pretty well organized, but there’s just no space left. After opening every closet and every cabinet, it becomes very clear that every inch is taken up. The home looks neat and presentable but inside, its storage spaces are full.
I came across one of these scenarios not too long ago. All the light bulbs were on one shelf, all the baking goods were clearly designated to one cabinet in the kitchen, toiletries were sorted in the bathroom, etc. The problem was that there was no space left to add anything in. So instead of focusing on systems and organizing solutions, we focused on eliminating excess to just create more space.
All the items in the house were already sorted and, for the most part, stored with like items. This actually made our job fairly easy. All we needed to do was sift through space after space and collect things to donate. Consider these solutions to prevent overstuffing your storage in your home.
- Avoid buying in bulk. Shop more often or limit bulk buying to the products you use most often.
- Think practically. For example, if you have twenty bars of soap, the likelihood of you using all of them in the next year is very unlikely. It makes more sense to keep a few bars of soap and let the rest go. The soap will sit there for years upon years if you make an excuse to keep them all.
- Consider when you last used the item. If you’re short on space, storing items you never or rarely use isn’t worth keeping them.
- Choose disposable items. Instead of storing Christmas tins or excess pie plates, do the alternative. Use disposable pie shell crusts and Christmas Ziploc bags or flat Christmas plates which are smaller to store.
- Limit interests and hobbies. Let go of past interests and hobbies that have lost their luster. If you take up knitting or bowling again in the future, you can always reintroduce new items. If the hobby was super expensive, consider selling the parts and pieces.
Before you go out and buy yet another storage cabinet, take a good look at your home and answer honestly: Do you really have “not enough space” or do you just have “too much stuff”?
Photo © razihusin / iStockphoto